Advance Directives are documents that allow you to convey your preferences ahead of time
Living Will / Power of Attorney for Healthcare Form: If your previous directive, about what to do if you become unable to make your own decisions, was written prior to 2008 you need to fill out this new one.
Funeral Planning Form As of 2013 this document should be notarized (easily done for free at any bank) or follow Utah law for witness signatures (Utah code 75-2-502). Remember to share your plan with your next of kin lest a sales person dictates what they purchase. Here's a valuable letter (editable.docx or .pdf) to introduce your Funeral Plan to your loved ones.
Agent to Control Disposition Form.pdf (or an editable word .doc version) If your next of kin don't agree or cannot carry out your funeral plans, do not worry, just assign a specific person to control the disposition of your remains. As of 2013 this document should be notarized (easily done for free at any bank) or follow Utah law for witness signatures (Utah code 75-2-502).
UofU Body Donor Program [...if you can't get in, and instead buy a local cremation, the cost should be less than $1K] Whole Body Donation You may bequeath your body to the University of Utah for science and education. Transportation costs are covered within 50 miles. You can even specify whether, following the required cremation, the ashes be returned to family or be buried in the Salt Lake City Cemetery. Every year a memorial service is held in May and survivors of donors receive written invitations to participate.
If you sign up to donate your whole body BUT you've also stated on your Drivers License that you want to donate organs THEN eyes and skin are the only organs you can donate. Donation of other organs disqualifies the body for donation to the school. You can specify what organs or tissues you do/don't want harvested on the Donor Registry website (yesutah.org)
Organ Donor Directives are specified on our Utah drivers license or state ID. You can edit your organ donor preferences on the website yesutah.org using your drivers license number. If you, a relative, or a friend has registered to be a donor don't let mortuaries add to your grief: Mortuaries include on their price list a charge for organ donor repair BUT Intermountain Donor Services (IDS) is supposed to pay that fee.
No agency follows up to make sure that mortuaries are not billing both you and IDS!
You can also specify what organs or tissues you do/don't want harvested on the Donor Registry website (yesutah.org); Example, one person wrote in their specifications: "I want my family or friends to be able to carry out my funeral and body transport without a funeral director. So only remove those organs and tissue that allow my body to be completely sutured and sealed by the organ recovery team."
Religious and Scriptural views A 3 page pdf discussion of cremation vs whole body burial -We are glad to receive more religious views to help those seeking clarification between what is an influence of our culture upon religious people and what is an actual dictate of their religion.
How to pay for a funeral Lots of helps can be found on our "Need $ Today" page.
To Pre-pay or NOT to Pre-pay, that is the question
You CAN change your mind!
Utah State Licensure Rules read:
R156-9-616. Maximum Revocation Fee.
If a buyer revokes or defaults under a guaranteed preneed funeral arrangement contract, the funeral service establishment may retain a revocation fee from the trust corpus, not to exceed 25% of the amount received from the sale of the contract and trust earnings thereupon, provided the revocation fee is clearly identified in the contract.
Pre-planning a Home Funeral?
Fill out the Utah State living-will form (the form is under the last heading on page)
Fill out a Funeral Planning Form (see "plan ahead" page)
Figure the cost of cremation or burial and how to pay for it (savings or insurance policy).
If you don't have next-of-kin that can carry out your plan, fill out an Assignment Form to appoint someone else to control the disposition of your remains.
If you want to provide a program for funeral attendees here is a template in Microsoft Publisher format. Insert your own pictures and as much information as you can ahead of time.
Compile and give copies to your next-of-kin and your chosen Dispositioner.
Read story after story
of funeral shickanery
from sea to shining sea.
from the very beginning!
A state by state reference
of funeral freedoms
is included in the book.
The inspirational movie Departures helps re-examine our own funeral culture:
I'm young and healthy. Why should I have a Living Will & Funeral Plan?!
Life is richer when you live like each day could be your last.
Others receive comfort knowing YOUR wishes when you can't speak for yourself.
Doctors more likely to make decisions that are best, instead of protocol.
Family will be less likely to argue with each other.
Hospitals will be less able to bankrupt your family.